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Meena Percale Indigo Ultimate Bedding Bundle

Contemporary Handmade

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Portugal

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PROVENANCE

The lace trim on this bedding piece represents a 400-year old tradition. The craft first developed near the delta of the Godavari River, where women in fishing communities made fishnets, honing their skills with needle and thread from a very early age. During the Mughal empire, the technique was used to adorn prayer rugs and caps. From these origins, the delicate, characteristic patterns created today evolved in the late 19th century, when woman were supplied thread by Belgian missionaries, gaining self-employment to create beautiful lace that were ultimately exported across Europe.

The Indus Valley civilizations were the first to cultivate cotton. India held a global monopoly on cotton for about 3,000 years - from 1500 B.C. to 1500 A.D. Cotton was traded first to Greece and the Roman empire before becoming a major export to Europe, from basic prints to complex multi-step resist dye and hand-painted fabrics. In the 19th century, the first steam-powered cotton mills were built, ushering in the modern age of the Indian cotton industry. After World War II, cotton became an important symbol of independence from British colonialism.

In ancient times, from opulent Egypt to stark West Africa, fabric has been dyed a mysterious, beautiful blue. This indigo, or "gold blue," is a sign of prestige and a symbol of the link between heaven and earth. Through a careful process, indigo can produce a vast palette of blue hues; traditional dyers would ask their customers' color preferences, from the palest sky to the deepest midnight. Dye vats alone take a full week to prepare and require daily stirring. The un-dyed cloth is pinched, sewn, and tied according to precise patterns. Once dye is applied to the material, the ties are removed, revealing patterns of lines, shells, dots, or tracery.